This verse is in the middle of an extended proverbial saying which speaks symbolically of cisterns, wells, springs, streams and fountains. In the midst of the discussion, father speaks this verse to his son (see :1, 20) – “Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers.”
Dad isn’t suggesting selfish, inappropriate, anti-social behavior. Instead, a thoughtful reading of this extended wise saying indicates a series of metaphors which speak enigmatically about the intimacy of marriage – certainly putting this seemingly selfishness attitude in a different light!
In fact, it raises an important spiritual truth. There are things in our lives which we simply must zealously protect – like our marriages.
But there are other things, too. We must also be diligent to not let other people, places or things inappropriately interject themselves into our spiritual walk.
In recovery, we tell folks “stay in your lane and focus on yourself.” To be the person we’re supposed to be in relation to other, it’s essential that we do what we must to keep our own recovery and spiritual walk first.
If we don’t, we’ll have no one else to blame but ourselves. And, if we don’t — no one else can do it for us!